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SHS Views. 2006; (14):8-12.Poverty is not an inevitability. In its effort to fight poverty, UNESCO has mobilized all programme Sectors to work towards the first of the Millennium Development Goals as defined by the United Nations: the eradication of extreme poverty. While the Organization's Member States have yet to decide how this cross-cutting programme should continue, SHS Views takes stock of the programme's first five years. (excerpt)
Population and Development Review. 2005 Jun; 31(2):389-398.The Millennium Ecosystem Assessment, an elaborate international project set up in 2001 under UN auspices, aims “to assess the consequences of ecosystem change for human wellbeing and to establish the scientific basis for actions needed to enhance the conservation and sustainable use of ecosystems and their contributions to human well-being.” It involves over 1,000 experts as panel and working group members, authors, and reviewers. Numerous reports are planned, covering the global and regional situations, scenarios of the future, and options for sustainable management. The first of these, the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment Synthesis Report, was issued in March 2005. The Report is organized around four main findings. The first two concern the past: what has happened and what it has meant for human welfare. The other two concern the future: what may happen and what might be done to improve matters. The time frame is the last 50 years and the next 50. Ecological change is assessed in terms of ecosystem services— the benefits humans receive from ecosystems. These include: provisioning services (supplying food, fresh water, timber, etc.); regulating services (climate regulation, erosion control, pollination); cultural services (recreation, aesthetic enjoyment); and supporting services (soil formation, photosynthesis, nutrient cycling). Of 24 services examined in the assessment, 15 are determined to be in decline or are being drawn on at an unsustainable rate. The welfare costs of these changes are disproportionately borne by the poor. Four world scenarios are developed to explore plausible ecological futures, varying in degrees of regionalism and economic liberalization and in approaches to ecosystem management. Under all of them the outlook is for continued pressure on consumption of ecosystem services and continued loss of biodiversity. In particular, ecosystem degradation “is already a significant barrier to achieving the Millennium Development Goals agreed to by the international community in September 2000 and the harmful consequences of this degradation could grow significantly worse in the next 50 years.” Remedy will be demanding: “An effective set of responses to ensure the sustainable management of ecosystems requires substantial changes in institutions and governance, economic policies and incentives, social and behavior factors, technology, and knowledge.” Such changes “are not currently under way.” The excerpt below, covering Findings #1 and #2 of the Assessment, is taken from the section of the report titled Summary for Decision-makers. Most of the charts are omitted. Parenthetical levels of certainty correspond to the following probabilities: very certain, = 98%; high certainty, 85–98%; medium, 65–85%; low, 52–65%. (author's)
Social Science and Medicine. 2003 Oct; 57(8):1397-1407.The battle to completely control cholera continues. Multiple strains, high levels of morbidity in some regions of the world, and a complex of influences on its distribution in people and the environment are accompanied by only rough resolution prediction of outbreaks. Uncertainty as to the most effective array of interventions for one of the most researched infectious diseases thwarts further progress in providing cost-effective solutions. Progress on the research front consistently points towards the importance of disease ecology, coastal environments, and the sea. However, evaluation of the link between cholera in people and environment can only be effective with analysis of human vulnerability to variable coastal cholera ecologies. As there are some clear links between the organism, cholera incidence and the sea, it is appropriate that cholera research should examine the nature of coastal population vulnerability to the disease. The paper reviews the cholera risks of human–environment interactions in coastal areas as one component of the evaluation of cholera management. This points to effective intervention through integrative knowledge of changing human and environmental ecologies, requiring improved detection, but also an acceptance of complex causality. The challenge is to identify indicators and interventions for case specific ecologies in variable locales of human vulnerability and disease hazard. Further work will therefore aim to explore improved surveillance and intervention across the sociobehavioural and ecological spectrum. Furthermore, the story of cholera continues to inform us about how we should more effectively view emergent and resurgent infectious disease hazards more generally. (author's)
Report of the National Seminar on Environment and Sustainable Development, Aden, 25-27 February 1989.
[Unpublished] 1989. iv, 131 p.The 1989 final report on the environment and sustainable development includes a summary of events an a summary of types of participants in attendance. The purpose of the seminar was to provide senior national experts, policy makers, planners, and executives (in conjunction with UN representatives) with a forum for examination of issues and to propose recommendations and solutions. The level of awareness must be raised among officials and the public. Policy instruments and action must be identified in order to contribute to sustainable growth and the alleviation of poverty. The principle components of a national environmental strategy were to be outlined. The National Council for Environmental Protection needed to be reactivated. After the opening statements, the topics included in this presentation were the organization and agenda for 5 working groups, development projects and environmental considerations, environmental legislation and institutions, marine and coastal areas environment and resources, environmental awareness and education and human resources, policies and future trends, the seminar declaration and recommendations, and closing statements. The full text is provided for the opening statements, the closing statements, and the background papers. Lists of additional background papers and the seminar steering committee members are also given. The seminar declaration referred to the interlocking crises of development, environment, and energy. Population growth threatens world survival, particularly in the poorest countries. Expected economic growth will further deplete environmental resources and contribute to pollution. The world is bound together by these concerns. International debt forces poor countries to overexploit resources and destroy their production base. Developing countries are still in economic disarray. Economic reform hasn't worked for poor countries, and the resource gap is widening between countries. The answer is sustainable development, which is based on an equitable and rational exploitation of natural resources. International cooperation and peace must be strengthened dialogue and understanding and support for the UN.
Global biodiversity strategy. Guidelines for action to save, study, and use Earth's biotic wealth sustainably and equitably.
Washington, D.C., WRI, 1992. vi, 244 p.Humanity depends on all other forms of life on Earth and its nonliving components including the atmosphere, ocean, bodies of freshwater, rocks, and soils. If humanity is to persist and to develop so that everyone enjoys the most basic of human rights, it must protect the structure, functions, and diversity of the world's natural systems. The World Resources Institute, the World Conservation Union, and the UN Environment Programme have joined together to prepare this strategy for global biodiversity. The first 2 chapters cover the nature and value of biodiversity and losses of biodiversity and their causes. The 3rd chapter presents the strategy for biodiversity conservation which includes the goal of such conservation and its contents and catalysts and 5 actions needed to establish biodiversity conservation. Establishment of a national policy framework for biodiversity conservation is the topic of the 4th chapter. It discusses 3 objectives with various actions to accomplish each objective. Integration of biodiversity conservation into international economic policy is 1 of the 3 objectives of the 5th chapter--creating an international policy environment that supports national biodiversity conservation. Correct imbalances in the control of land and resources is a clear objective in creating conditions and incentives for local biodiversity conservation--the topic of the 6th chapter. The next 3 chapters are devoted to managing biodiversity throughout the human environment; strengthening protected areas; and conserving species, populations, and genetic diversity. The last chapter provides specific actions to improve human capacity to conserve biodiversity including promotion of basic and applied research and assist institutions to disseminate biodiversity information.
In: Global biodiversity strategy: guidelines for action to save, study, and use Earth's biotic wealth sustainably and equitably, [compiled by] World Resources Institute [WRI], World Conservation Union [IUCN], United Nations Environment Programme [UNEP], in consultation with Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations [FAO], UNESCO. [Washington, D.C.], WRI, 1992. 117-32.There are 8163 protected areas worldwide covering 750 million hectares of marine and terrestrial ecosystems amounting to 5.1% of national land area. One objective is to identify national and international priorities for biodiversity conservation by national reviews of protected area systems; by immediate and longterm action for establishing protected areas (strictly protected areas of nature reserves, national parks and extractive areas of habitat and wildlife management areas and protected landscapes); by international assessment of requirements (authorization and funding of the IUCN Commission on National Parks and Protected Areas and use of the analyses of the 4th World Congress on National PArks and Protected Areas, February 1992, and the Parks in Peril program that identified 200 sites in Latin America); by promoting the establishment of private protected areas; and by international cooperation in area management (the International Council for Bird Preservation and the Western Hemisphere Shorebird Reserve Network identified the habitat of migratory birds). Another objective is to ensure the sustainability of protected areas and to contribute to biodiversity conservation by more extensive participation in protected area management plans (internal management of each site, human use of protected areas, development and bioregion resource use policies, study of biodiversity, and financial needs); by expanded management objectives of protected areas; by increasing the ecological and social value of protected areas through external land purchase and zoning and conservation of adjacent private lands; by raising the ecological and social value of such areas through expanded benefits to people (nature tourism and employment related to protection); and by restoring degraded lands within protected areas and adjacent lands.
Oxford, England, Oxford University Press, 1987. xv, 400 p.In this report, the World Commission on Environment and Development does not predict ever increasing environmental decay, poverty, and hardship in a world becoming more polluted and experiencing decreasing resources but sees instead the possibility for a new era of economic growth. This era of economic growth must be based on policies that sustain and expand the environmental resource base. Such growth is absolutely essential to relieving the great poverty that is intensifying in much of the developing world. The report suggests a pathway by which the peoples of the world can enlarge their spheres of cooperation. The Commission has focused its attention in the areas of population, food security, the loss of species and genetic resources, and human settlements, recognizing that all are connected and cannot be treated in isolation from each other. 2 conditions must be satisfied before international economic exchanges can become beneficial for all involved: the sustainability of ecosystems on which the global economy depends must be guaranteed; and the economic partners must be satisfied that the basis of exchange is equitable. Neither condition is met for many developing nations. Efforts to maintain social and ecological stability through old approaches to development and environmental protection will increase stability. The Commission has identified several actions that must be undertaken to reduce risks to survival and to put future development on sustainable paths. Such a reorientation on a continuing basis is beyond the reach of present decision making structures and institutional arrangements, both national and international. The Commission has taken care to base its recommendations on the realities of present institutions, on what can and must be accomplished now; yet to keep options open for future generations, the present generation must begin to act now and to act together. The Commission's proposals for institutional and legal change at the national, regional, and international levels are embodied in 6 priority areas: getting at the sources; dealing with the effects; assessing global risks; making informed choices; providing the legal means; and investing in the future.
In: Great decisions 1988: foreign policy issues facing the nation, [by] Foreign Policy Association. New York, New York, Foreign Policy Association, 1988. 62-71.The impact of uncontrolled growth on the state of the world's limited resources and environment was alarmingly brought a public attention by "Global 2000," a report commissioned in 1977 by the Carter administration. A similar assessment was the "Brundtland Report" of the World Commission on Environment and Development, released by the UN in 1987. The question of national growth vs environment is often politically charged because conservation is expensive and often involves political relationships in 2 or more countries. Several specific instances are examined: ozone depletion, the greenhouse effect, acid rain, water pollution, energy resources, nuclear energy, species extinction, soil erosion, and population growth. The ozone hole came to public attention in 1985. Through chemical combination chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) have been depleting the ozone layer in the upper atmosphere with resulting exposure of the earth to ultraviolet rays, which cause skin cancer. Signatories to an international agreement in 1986 agreed to curtail CFC usage by 50% by 1999. The greenhouse effect, recognized in 1957, involves raising the global temperature through burning of fossil fuels, which increases atmospheric concentrations of carbon dioxide (C02), which prevent the sun's heat from escaping. Acid rain, caused by the release of nitrogen oxides and sulfur dioxide into the atmosphere by fossil fuel smelters and power plants, has foreign policy implications; plants in the US cause forest damage in Canada, and plants in Britain cause forest damage in Germany and Scandinavia. Water pollution by toxic chemicals came to public attention when the pollution of Love Canal's water supply prompted Congress in 1980 to create the $1.6 billion Superfund to clean up toxic wastes. The limited supply of oil, controlled by the OPEC nations, was pointedly brought home to the US by the "gas crunch" of the 1970s. The dangers of nuclear energy, as illustrated by Three Mile Island and Chernobyl, have not caused the US to back off from the Shoreham and Seabrook projects. Massive species extinction is expected to result from the destruction of the Amazon rain forests to make way for development. Overfarming and forest destruction in order to increase food production, especially in Third World countries, have caused soil erosion and its attendant decline in soil fertility. Finally, probably the most urgent of all environmental problems is overpopulation. Despite the outstanding successes of China and India in attaining food self-sufficiency, most of the developing countries' population is fast outstripping their food supply. The US, due to the pronatalist policy of the Reagan administration, has withdrawn all financial support from the UN Fund for Population Activities (UNFPA). Conservation is expensive; it is argued that activities such as emission controls and development of alternative fuels will prove prohibitively expensive and hence limiting to growth. On the other hand, ecological degradation and uncontrolled population growth will inevitably lead to hunger, misery, and eventually to conflict over the control of the earth's limited resources.
[Workshop on Sensitization of Communication Professionals to Population Problems, Dakar, 29 August, 1986 at Breda] Seminaire atelier de sensibilisation des professionnels de la communication aux problemes de population, Dakar du 25 au 29 Aout 1986 au Breda.
Dakar, Senegal, UNICOM, Unite de Communication, 1986. 215 p. (Unite de Communication Projet SEN/81/P01)This document is the result of a workshop organized by the Communication Unit of the Senegalese Ministry of Planning and Cooperation to sensitize some 30 Senegalese journalists working in print and broadcast media to the importance of the population variable in development and to prepare them to contribute to communication programs for population. Although it is addressed primarily to professional communicators, it should also be of interest to educators, economists, health workers, demographers, and others interested in the Senegalese population. The document is divided into 5 chapters, the 1st of which comprises a description of the history and objectives of the Communication Unit, which is funded by the UN Fund for Population Activities (UNFPA). Chapter 1 also presents the workshop agenda. Chapter 2 provides an introduction to population problems and different currents of thought regarding population since Malthus, a discussion of the utilization and interpretation of population variables, and definitions of population indicators. The 3rd chapter explores problems of population and development in Senegal, making explicit the theoretical concepts of the previous chapter in the context of Senegal. Topics discussed in chapter 3 include the role of UNFPA in introducing the population variable in development projects in Senegal; population and development, the situation and trends of the Senegalese population; socioeconomic and cultural characteristics of the Senegalese population; sources of sociodemographic data on Senegal; the relationship between population, resources, environment and development in Senegal; and the Senegalese population policy. Chapter 4 discusses population communication, including population activities of UNESCO and general problems of social communication; a synthesis and interpretation of information needs and the role of population communication; and a summary of the workshop goals, activities, and achievements. Chapter 5 contains annexes including a list of participants, opening and closing remarks, an evaluation questionnaire regarding the workshop participants, and press clippings relating to the workshop and to Senegal's population.
Freetown, Sierra Leone, Ministry of Education, 1984. 93 p. (UNFPA/UNESCO Project SIL/76/POI)The National Programme in Social Studies in Sierra Leone has created this textbook in the social sciences, with an emphasis on population education, for 2ndary school students. Unit 1, "Man's Origin, Development and Characteristics," describes Darwin's theory of evolution and explains how overproduction causes problems of rapid population growth and poor quality of life. Special attention is given to the problem of high infant mortality in Sierra Leone. Unit 2, "Man's Environment," discusses the interrelationships and interdependence among elements in the ecosystem, the food pyramid, and the effects of man's activities and numbers on the ecosystem. Unit 3, "Man's Culture," focuses on the processes of socialization and the different agents of socialization: the family, the group, the school, and the community. Unit 4, "Population and Resources," discusses human and natural resources as well as conservation measures. It also discusses the population composition, its effect on resources, and the uses and significance of population data. Unit 5, "Communication in the Service of Man," covers land, water and air transport; the effects of transport developments in Sierra Leone; and implications for population of changes in transport activities. Unit 6, "Global Issues: Achievements and Problems," deals with the young population, characteristics of the adolescent, common social problems among young people, and the role of the family unit. National and international action is also discussed.
Freetown, Sierra Leone, Ministry of Education, 1984. 80 p. (UNFPA/UNESCO Project SIL/76/POI)The National Programme in Social Studies in Sierra Leone has created this textbook in the social sciences for secondary school students. Unit 1, "Man's Origins, Development and Characteristics," presents the findings of archaeologists and anthropologists about the different periods of man's development. Man's mental development and population growth are also considered. Unit 2, "Man's Environment," discusses the physical and social environments of Sierra Leone, putting emphasis on the history of migrations into Sierra Leone and the effects of migration on population growth. Unit 3, "Man's Culture," deals with cultural traits related to marriage and family structure, different religions of the world, and traditional beliefs and population issues. Unit 4, "Population and Resources," covers population distribution and density and the effects of migration on resources. The unit also discusses land as a resource and the effects of the land tenure system, as well as farming systems, family size and the role of women in farming communities. Unit 5, "Communication in the Service of Man", focuses on modern means of communication, especially mass media. Unit 6, "Global Issues: Achievements and Problems," discusses the identification of global issues, such as colonialism, the refugee problem, urbanization, and the population problems of towns and cities. The unit describes 4 organizations that have been formed in response to problems such as these: the UN, the Red Cross, the International Labor Organization, and the Co-operative for American Relief.
Freetown, Sierra Leone, Ministry of Education, 1984. 80 p. (UNFPA/UNESCO Project SIL/76/POI)The National Programme in Social Studies in Sierra Leone has created this text in social studies, with an emphasis on population education, for 2ndary school students. Unit 1, "Man's Origins, Development and Characteristics," covers traditional, religious and scientific explanations of man's origin; man's characteristics and the effects of these characteristics; and the beginnings of population growth and the characteristics of human population. In Unit 2, "Man's Environment," the word environment is defined and geographical concepts are introduced. Unit 3, "Man's Culture," defines institution and discusses family types, roles and cycles, as well as traditional ceremonies and cultural beliefs about family size. Unit 4, "Population and Resources," primarily deals with how the family meets its needs for food, shelter and clothing. It also covers the effects of population growth. Unit 5, "Communication in the Service of Man," discusses the means and growth of communication and collecting vital information about the population. The last unit defines global issues and discusses the interdependence of nations, issues affecting nations at the individual and world level, and the UN.
In: Population, resources, environment and development. Proceedings of the Expert Group on Population, Resources, Environment and Development, Geneva, 25-29 April 1983, [compiled by] United Nations. Department of International Economic and Social Affairs. New York, New York, United Nations, 1984. 1-60. (Population Studies No. 90; ST/ESA/SER.A/90; International Conference on Population, 1984)The primary objective of the meeting of the Expert Group on Population, Resources, Environment, and Development was to identify mechanisms through which poulation characteristics conditioned and were conditioned by resource use, environmental effects, and the development structure. This called for a systems approach in which all factors were treated simultaneously and in which the closing of loops through feedback effects was of foremost importance. The 1st item of the agenda called for a general discussion of past and future trends in population, resources, environment, and development. The Expert Group emphasized the need for better knowledge of how the trends of the various variables interacted and modified each other and particularly about the role of population within the interrelationships. The discussion of food and nutrition focused on the demographic, economic, social, political, and institutional aspects of meeting the needs for food and nutrition, while the physical aspects were given greater attention in the discussions of resources and environments. At the center of the deliberations were such concerns as poverty, the food versus feed controversy, food self sufficiency, and the role of population growth. The discussion on resources and the environment covered the resource base, environmental degradation, and nonrenewable resources. Attention was directed to the various mechanisms that could expand resource availability as well as those activities that had caused a degradation of the environment. The discussions of social and economic aspects of development involved 4 interrelated topics: income distribution, employment, health and education, and social security. The last items on the agenda addressed the issue of integrated planning and policy formation. Some members of the Expert Group were concerned with immediate problems. Viewing demographic trends as largely exogenous, they gave highest priority to finding the best way to accommodate the needs of growing populations. Others emphasized longrun problems and considered demographic trends as policy instruments for dealing with problems of resources, the environment, and development.
[Geneva, Switzerland], WHO, . 2 p. (WHO/CDD/SER/84.7)In 1982-1983 the Who Diarrhoeal Diseases Control (CDD) Programme supported laboratory studies to identify a more stable ORS composition, particularly for use in tropical countries, where ORS has to be packed and stored under climatic conditions of high humidity and temperature. The results of these studies demostrate that ORS containing 2.9 grams of trisodium citrate dihydrate in place of 2.5 grams of sodium bicarbonate was the best of the formulations evaluated. 7 clinical trials were undertaken in which the efficacy of ORS-citrate and ORS-bicarbonate was compared. All but 1 of these trials had a double-blind study design. 4 of these studies were undertaken in children below 2 years of age with moderate to severe noncholera diarrhea. The ORS-citrate was received by 128 children and found to be uniformly as effective as ORS-bicarbonate in correcting acidosis. In 3 of the 4 studies from which preliminary data are available, there was a trend towards a reduction (8-14%) of diarrheal stool output in children receiving the ORS-citrate. Countries should have no hesitation in continuning to use ORS-bicarbonate, which is highly effective. However, because of its better stability and apparently greater efficacy, WHO and UNICEF now recommend that countries use and produce ORS-citrate where feasible.
Earthwatch. 1984; (16):7.The International Union for the Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources (IUCN), cooperates with the International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF) and other agencies to: actively promote policies designed to attain a balance between population and resources, within national conservation strategies and through field activities to preserve nature and natural resources; take into account the fundamental issues of population and resources in its policies, programs, resolutions, and public statements, where appropriate; keep trends in population and resources under review, reporting back to each IUCN General Assembly; encourage nongovernment organizations, including local conservation groups and family planning associations, to work together to spread awareness of the links between population, resources, and the environment; encourage governments to undertake periodic assessments of population trends, natural resources, and likely economic conditions, their interrelationships and the implications for the achievement of national goals; encourage governments to establish a population policy and to consider the special environmental problems of the urban and rural poor and to promote sustainable rural development; encourage nations to take effective action to obtain the basic right of all couples to have access to safe and effective family planning methods, as established in the World Population Plan of Action; and generally encourage national and international development policies which help create the conditions in which human population can successfully be brought into balance with carefully conserved natural resources.
Population problems and policies in economically advanced countries: report of a conference at Ditchley Park, England, Sept. 29 - Oct. 2, 1972.
Wash., D.C., Population Crisis Committee, 1973. 36 p.Add to my documents.
In: Ethics for a small planet: new horizons on population, consumption, and ecology, [by] Daniel C. Maguire and Larry L. Rasmussen. Albany, New York, State University of New York Press, 1998. 1-63. (SUNY Series in Religious Studies)This essay on population, consumption, and ecology, opens with a short review of the crisis caused by overpopulation and the inequitable distribution of resources. This discussion is then amplified by a close look at conditions and responses to these conditions in Egypt, China, and the Indian state of Kerala and at the six most common interrelated problems that threaten our existence: maldistribution, the perversion of national governments into the service of the elite, unfair distributional patterns protected by a military support system, male dominance, indifference, and a lack of reproductive health services. Next, the essay considers the role of government and ways to achieve freedom of reproductive choices while reducing birth rates. The remainder of the essay is devoted to a consideration of the role of religions in the next millennium; the prospects for religious revolution and renaissance; the nature of religion and of God, whether God exists; the experience of the sacred; the relationship of ethics and religion; the incongruity of a sacramental, monotheistic view of God with the violence of nature; the maleness of the God-symbol; the "posthumous egoism" that seeks an afterlife and views the earth as a mere stopping-off place on the journey; and the need for religion, as a sense of the sacred, to fuel the cultural revolution needed to solve the planet's problems. The essay concludes that, despite the fact that the apocalypse is reality for much of the world, hope remains and was palpable during the 1994 International Conference on Population and Development.
Geneva, Switzerland, World Health Organization [WHO], Administrative Committee on Coordination, Sub-Committee on Nutrition, 1998 Mar 25. , 30 p.This report provides a summary of UN nutritional interventions, living conditions, and refugee situations for selected countries in sub-Saharan Africa and Asia. In 1998, conditions in Afghanistan, Angola, Liberia, and Rwanda permitted a shift, partial or country-wide, from relief efforts to development. Flooding in many East African countries (Burundi, Kenya, Somalia, and Tanzania) placed many people at risk of malnutrition. Conflicts and flooding continue to pose problems of access to large population groups in Uganda, Somalia, and Burundi and pose other problems in some areas of Rwanda, Tanzania, Congo, Sierra Leone, and Sudan. Food and non-food stocks are problematic in Burundi, Tanzania, Sierra Leone, Sudan, and Uganda, and are inadequate in some areas of the Congo. Stocks are unknown in Somalia and Rwanda. Food and non-food pipelines are not known in Uganda, and are problematic in Sudan and Somalia. Logistics are inadequate in some areas of Angola, Rwanda, Congo, Liberia, Sierra Leone, and Sudan, and are problematic in Burundi, Tanzania, Somalia, and Uganda. Camp factors are a problem in some areas of Rwanda, Congo (inadequate staff), Liberia, and Sudan, and are problematic in Burundi, Somalia, and Uganda. Rations are a problem in some camps in Rwanda, Congo, Liberia, Somalia, and Sudan, and are problematic in Burundi, Tanzania, Sierra Leone, and Uganda. Immunization is a problem in some areas of Congo, and is problematic in Burundi, Liberia, Sierra Leone, Sudan, Somalia, and Uganda. Information is problematic in Burundi, Rwanda, Sierra Leone, Somalia, and Uganda.
In: Population -- the complex reality. A report of the Population Summit of the world's scientific academies, edited by Francis Graham-Smith. London, England, Royal Society, 1994. 103-16.Life is based on the continuous circulation of water. This essential idea has been ignored in major UN conferences at Rio and in the Brundtland report. Development occurs within several constructs: 1) the landscape reality controlled by natural laws and human management and 2) human mental attitudes and mechanics of economy and administration. A Northern "temperate zone imperialism" has occurred in discussing developing country problems. Absent from discussions has been the water scarcity issue and the general dimensions of balancing increasing human needs and limited resource capacity. Demographers must begin analysis of the impact of scarce water resources on population dynamics. Three outcomes are possible: water quality deterioration, food scarcity in general, and crop failure from drought and the consequent famines. In dry climates water is consumed at the rate of 1000 cubic meters of water per ton of biomass produced. Water is continually recycled between land mass and the atmosphere. Water scarcity is expected to increase by 10 times over the next 20 years. The landscape is vulnerable under water scarcity conditions. Water contamination poses disease hazards, and droughts create famine situations. The impact of water supply (environmental vulnerability) is the greatest in developing countries compared to temperate climate countries, because agriculture is the main income producing commodity, evaporative demand is high, and the climate includes frequent droughts or lack of water for part of the year. The dilemma is that the greatest population numbers are in regions with the most environmental vulnerability. Subsistence level requirements have been estimated at 500-2500 cubic meters per capita annually for water and for food security with irrigation at 750 cubic meters per capita annually. Water storage in reservoirs from flood flow would sustain a population density of 600 persons/flow unit of water. Constraints to water supplies are land related, water quality related, and globally related. The water scarcity situation will appear far before the greenhouse gas-driven changes affect the environment.
POPULATION AND DEVELOPMENT REVIEW. 1995 Jun; 21(2):361-86.At the 1993 Population Summit in New Delhi, 60 scientific academies represented at the Summit signed a joint statement affirming that reducing population growth is a necessary part of ecological sustainable development and that action is needed now. As an explanation of this statement, the Summit produced a book of essays entitled Population--The Complex Reality. There is, however, little consensus among the contributors about the complex relationship between population, development, and the environment. Given that scientists remain uncertain about the causal relationships linking population growth to economic and ecological change, concerned governments must be equally uncertain as to which demographic policies to adopt for economic development. This review of selected essays from the Summit collection argues that the complexity of the relationships between population, development, and the environment should not be an excuse for unresolved uncertainty. Rather, this same complexity should inspire a new and comprehensive approach to explaining how human social systems work and how they can be managed to achieve outcomes that people value. Some of the contributors to the collection explore the concept of openly applying ethical reasoning to demographic policy. While their ethical reasonings may well be debated, they are right to openly discuss ethics as a normal part of social science discourse, rather than allowing unspoken, and thereby unchallenged, moral assumptions to covertly shape their policies. They also affirm the value of historical and case-oriented methods of research as a necessary corrective to the standard quantitative methods, which are given to minimizing complexity rather than coping with it.
In: Race to save the tropics. Ecology and economics for a sustainable future, edited by Robert Goodland. Washington, D.C., Island Press, 1990. 3-32.Economic development has not always increased the quality of life; the impact of economic development on the natural environment has caused failure in specific development projects. Applied ecology can enhance economic development so that it preserves rather than damages the quality of life and of the environment. The influence of multilateral development banks (the World Bank, founded in 1945; Inter-American Development Bank, founded in 1959; the African Development Bank, founded in 1964; and the Asian Development Bank, founded in 1966) on the economic development process is also discussed. How applied ecology can enhance these multilateral development banks is described, and critical areas for future research are suggested. Regarding economic development and quality of life, the acute environmental stresses many developing countries experience are intensifying. Many of today's activities are degrading the world environment at an accelerating rate. More environmental degradation and destruction has probably occurred in the last 20 years than the previous 50 years, while GNP was rising 3% a year in developing countries. The systematic use of ecological principles in development planning can alleviate problems and is beneficial in increasing the quality of life: 1) by fostering the productivity of the natural resources upon which all development depends; 2) by favoring the maintenance of environmental quality; 3) by promoting efficient and sustainable natural resource use; and 4) by avoiding unexpected negative consequences of actions. Applied ecology in national planning consists of: national conservation strategies based on the World Conservation Strategy of 1980; environmental profiles which provide a comprehensive picture of a country's natural resources; natural resource inventories including forests, fisheries, woodlands, and grasslands; environmental sector reviews; year 2000 or 21st century studies; environmental statistics and the calculation of GNP; and carrying capacity. Applied ecology in specific development projects includes pre-project studies; design; mitigatory/compensatory measures; implementation and monitoring; evaluation; and cost/benefit analysis.
POPULATION BULLETIN OF THE UNITED NATIONS. 1993; (34-35):19-34.As part of the preparation for the up-coming International Conference on Population and Development, an expert group met at UN headquarters on January 20-24, 1992. The group noted that the momentum of population growth was expected to add 3 billion people to the global population between 1985 and 2025, with more than 90% of the growth occurring in the developing countries which are least able to respond to the attendant resource and environmental demands. The expert group discussed the interaction of population and resources, specifically the impact of population growth on the environment and carrying capacity. The meeting then focused on environmental discontinuities and uncertainties and on environmental degradation, specifically the loss of agricultural land, the destruction of tropical forests, fresh-water resource, the loss of biological diversify, and climate change. Following their deliberations, the expert group drafted 18 recommendations addressed to governments, social institutions, and international organizations. The group urged that governments establish or strengthen the integration of environmental and population concerns into development policy-making and planning and support technologies to achieve sustained economic growth and development while striving to replace the use of fossil fuels with renewable resources. Areas of the environment subject to acute population pressure should be identified and policies devised to reduce that pressure. Ecologically helpful labor-intensive projects should be implemented for their dual benefits. Women should be included in these activities, and their status in society, therefore, should be improved through improved education and participatory opportunities. The uses of water should be optimized to acknowledge its scarcity. The delivery of service to alleviate poverty should proceed in a manner that invites community participation, which, along with education, will be vital to institute these changes. Adequate resources for urban management should be allocated to local authorities. Environmentally displaced people should receive assistance while the cause of their uprooting is simultaneously addressed. Land-use planning and promotion of emergency prevention is increasingly important as populations settle in areas vulnerable to natural disasters. International organizations are urged to support efforts to minimize the health impacts of environmental degradation and increase their assistance in the areas of population, sustainable development, and the environment, especially in training and national planning. Awareness of the interrelatedness of these issues should be promoted in every way possible, especially through education, training, and the support of databases. Policy-oriented research should focus on identifying critically endangered areas. As policies are devised for sustainable development, special attention should be paid to improving the circumstances of indigenous people, and their accumulated experience with sustainable development should be sought and used. Finally, conflicting goals between countries should be identified by governments to allow open analysis, successful negotiation, and satisfactory solutions.
In: Change: threat or opportunity for human progress? Volume V. Ecological change: environment, development and poverty linkages, edited by Uner Kirdar. New York, New York, United Nations, 1992. 168-88.Man's envisaged economic conversion is integration of ecology and economy through reduction in resource input of production which results in a reduction of emissions and wastes that adversely affect the natural environment. Some industrial nations, the UN Environment Programme, and the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development already use environmental indicators of adverse effects of production (e.g., emission data). We know less about the environmental significance of input factors in industrial production and which indicators contribute environmentally significant information about the structure of the economy, however. Using data from 31 countries, not including the US, an economist demonstrates that delinking of energy, steel, and cement consumption and weight of freight transport from the growth of the gross domestic product (GDP) results in environmental gratis effects (rate of usage of input factors having a negative impact on the environment stays lower than the growth rate of GDP). It appears that the trend in developed countries is industrial restructuring. The conventional environmental policy is react-and-cure strategies on air and water pollution, noise, and waste. This costly policy needs to be improved by comparing environmental expenditures with data on environmental damage, identifying problems before ecosystems are destroyed, and incorporating cost-effective preventive measures. Environmental impact assessments are a means to accelerate technical knowledge and public awareness. Environmental standard setting should be a continuous process. Economy as it now exists indicates disharmony with nature (i.e., natural raw materials are swapped for produced waste materials polluting the environment). We should incorporate the external effects of production within our conscious or subconscious guiding principles, return the costs to the economic units that cause the environmental problem, and include the ecological viewpoint into all investment and economic decision making. We have yet to adapt a throughput economy (systematic reduction of depletable resources and generation of pollution emissions and wastes through recycling and clean technology).
Conservation of West and Central African rainforests. Conservation de la foret dense en Afrique centrale et de l'Ouest.
Washington, D.C., World Bank, 1992. xi, 353 p. (World Bank Environment Paper No. 1)This World Bank publication is a collection of selected papers presented at the Conference on Conservation of West and Central African Rainforests in Abidjan, Ivory Coast, in November 1990. These rainforests are very important to the stability of the regional and global environment, yet human activity is destroying them at a rate of 2 million hectares/year. Causes of forest destruction are commercial logging for export, conversion of forests into farmland, cutting of forests for fuelwood, and open-access land tenure systems. Other than an introduction and conclusion, this document is divided into 8 broad topics: country strategies, agricultural nexus, natural forestry management, biodiversity and conservation, forest peoples and products, economic values, fiscal issues, and institutional and private participation issues. Countries addressed in the country strategies section include Zaire, Cameroon, Sao Tome and Principe, and Nigeria. The forest peoples and products section has the most papers: wood products and residual from forestry operations in the Congo; Kutafuta Maisha: searching for life on Zaire's Ituri forest frontier; development in the Central African rainforest: concern for forest peoples; concern for Africa's forest peoples: a touchstone of a sustainable development policy; Tropical Forestry Action Plans and indigenous people: the case of Cameroon; forest people and people in the forest: investing in local community development; and women and the forest: use and conservation of forestry resources other than wood. Topics in the economic values section range from debt-for-nature swaps to environmental labeling. Forestry taxation and forest revenue systems are discussed under fiscal issues. The conclusion discusses saving Africa's rainforests.
In: Change: threat or opportunity for human progress? Volume V. Ecological change: environment, development and poverty linkages, edited by Uner Kirdar. New York, New York, United Nations, 1992. 154-60.The most common global concerns are the threat to the earth's ecological balance, challenges originating from new technologies, and the ability of developing countries to respond to these changes in a way conducive to sustainable development. Creative learning means that political systems assimilate new information when making policy decisions. pathological learning implies that political systems prevent new information from influencing policies, eventually leading to the system's failure. Policymakers cannot ignore the new technologies and the changing environment. The UN University had identified the most important research gaps with regard to technological development. recommendations from this study are more research on the relationship between the effects of existing trends in the technological revolution and the formation of development strategies and the significance of identifying alternatives of technological development better suited to the actual needs and conditions of developing countries. For example, biotechnology may produce new medications to combat some tropical diseases, but a lack of commercial interest in industrialized countries prevents the needed research. Research in the Himalayas shows the importance of focusing on the linkages between mountains and plains, instead of just the mountains, to resolve environmental degradation. This finding was not expected. The researchers promote a broader, more holistic, critical approach to environmental problem-solving. Humans must realize that we have certain rights and obligations to the earth and to future generations. We must translate these into enforceable standards at the local, national, and international levels to attain intergenerational equity. Policy-makers must do longterm planning and incorporate environmentally sound technologies and the conservation of the ecological balance into development policy. sustainable development must include social, economic, ecologic, geographic, and cultural aspects.